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Critical Metals for Our Future

A Recovering Economy Prompts an Uptick in Silicon Demand

Silicon is frequently used as a semiconductor in electronics. Typically, components such as printed circuit boards, transistors, integrated circuits, and many more include silicon in their composition due to its properties that help achieve the desired conductive efficiency. Geographically, the Asia-Pacific region accounts for the largest share of this market, with China leading the way as the world’s largest producer of silicon metal. Overall, the silicon metal market was valued at over 2.9 Million tons in 2020, and is market is projected to register a CAGR of 4% during the forecast period (2021-2026), according to data provided by Mordor Intelligence. MGX Minerals Inc. (CSE: XMG) (OTC: MGXMF), U.S. Silica Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: SLCA), Smart Sand, Inc. (NASDAQ: SND), HPQ Silicon Resources Inc. (TSX-V: HPQ) (OTC: HPQFF), PyroGenesis Canada Inc. (NASDAQ: PYR)

The current pandemic has affected both the demand and supply of silicon all around the world. As governments implemented restrictions to slow down the spread of the viral infections, regular material supply was severely disrupted, and most silicon metal plants temporarily stopped production. However, now that the world economy has returned to near full capacity, silicon is once again needed, as the semiconductor market is in a phase of increased demand. Global semiconductor sales stood at USD 439 Billion in 2020 due to the growing demand for chips across the markets.

MGX Minerals

Leaders in Strategic & Precious Metal Exploration

Silicon in Canada

Metallurgical testing on an one ton sample from the Company’s Gibraltar Silica deposit, located 95 kilometers north-east of Cranbrook, British Columbia, has indicated that the material is chemically suitable, as medium quality feedstock, for metallurgical-grade silicon. The one ton sample of quartzite from Gibraltar was shipped to an independent lab, Dorfner Anzaplan, an independent laboratory, for mineralogical analyses through X-ray diffraction analysis, chemical analyses through X-ray fluorescence spectroscopy, grain size distribution, mineral processing analysis, automated optical sorting, and thermal stability testing. The sample was crushed and screened into fractions between 20–120 mm for evaluation of applicability of these fractions as feedstock for metallurgical-grade silicon production. Results indicate that the material, after comminution and classification fraction, is of high initial purity (99.5 wt.-%), making the fraction chemically suitable as medium quality feedstock material for metallurgical-grade silicon metal production.

The demand for silicon metal continues to grow and recent supply chain bottlenecks have limited overall supply, creating an opportunity for the distribution of silicon in Asia from North America. Increased demand for solar panels, microprocessors, and silicon alloys, due to its semi-conductor and structural properties, continue to create large scale shortages for silicon. The current quoted spot price of silicon 3303# grade in China is $2,100 USD per tonne

The current pandemic has affected both the demand and supply of silicon all around the world. As governments implemented restrictions to slow down the spread of the viral infections, regular material supply was severely disrupted, and most silicon metal plants temporarily stopped production. However, now that the world economy has returned to near full capacity, silicon is once again needed, as the semiconductor market is in a phase of increased demand. Global semiconductor sales stood at USD 439 Billion in 2020 due to the growing demand for chips across the markets.

MGX Minerals

Leaders in Strategic & Precious Metal Exploration

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